Statistically, at least according to an informal survey of bar patrons I conducted last weekend, Williamsburg and Bushwick are home to more musicians than most other parts of the city. Which should mean that all of us are more than familiar with the tired trope of the struggling musician who’s just waiting to be signed: the bands playing to the same group of 20 friends each week, and somehow guilt you into paying that $5 cover almost every time; your drummer who hops from piss-stained mattress to piss-stained couch while he’s waiting for his “big break”; that 300-press of your band’s CD you made that you’re now using as a nightstand. As much as New York is the place we all come to dream big, it’s also the place we watch those dreams, and our bank accounts, slowly shrivel and die.
Enter Williamsburg-based music industry veterans Jesse Cannon and Todd Thomas. Cannon has not only been producing and managing bands for more than a decade, with groups like Animal Collective, The Misfits, The Cure, Leftover Crack, The Menzingers and Man Overboard; he, along with his partner Thomas, has been covering the way the music industry ‘s been rapidly changing on his blog, musformation.com. And just this week, the two of them decided to turn that blog into a comprehensive, 700-page look and DIY guide to the real way the music industry works today: Get More Fans: the DIY Guide to the New Music Business.